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20071201

Fast Company has an interesting article on how NASA is designing their next space ship Orion to use more off the shelf technology and less inventing from new. This shift in methodology is in the hope of improving costs by borrowing from good old american business sense.

The Honda Odyssey is used as a metaphor and plenty of comparisons are made.

"For every challenge facing Orion's engineers, there is a simple mantra: Borrow or buy before you invent.

That is, borrow technology NASA has already used, if it works. Buy technology from the commercial world that has been introduced in the past three decades, technology NASA didn't have to pay to develop or debug. And if you can't find a solution in stock or off the shelf, only then do you go into the NASA workshop and mix up something new."

NASCAR design and use of seats and impacts are being used to provide added cushion from impact for the passengers.

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